Hong Kong lawmakers approved a bill on Thursday that would criminalise insults to China’s national anthem, as protesters defied a ban on a vigil for the 31st anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre. Offenders will face three years in jail and fines as high as HK$50,000 (£5,160). The proposal passed with 41 in favour and one opposed after pro-democracy lawmakers staged protests, dropping stink bombs in the chamber and shouting as votes were cast. The ruling came as Hong Kong ramped up police presence after a vigil commemorating the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre was banned for the first time. Authorities cited social distancing measures, even though schools and bars have reopened. Metal barricades went up in Victoria Park to bar people from gathering to remember lives lost when the military gunned down peaceful pro-democracy demonstrators in Tiananmen Square, seen as a threat to the ruling Communist Party. After three decades, the Chinese government still has not acknowledged the event where hundreds, possibly thousands, died. Instead, Beijing has worked hard to erase it from history, a campaign that accelerates each year around the anniversary.